Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Stitch of the Week: Moorish

The Moorish Stitch (top right and left) is essentially the Diagonal Scotch stitch with a row of tent stitches in between. The over 1-2-3-2 pattern is repeated without interruption from the upper left to the lover right. In a different color or thread, a row of continental stitches is then worked on either side of the Diagonal Scotch stitches.

The Moorish stitch makes a fine background or filling stitch. It works up quickly and has good coverage on the reverse side of the canvas. It can be used for representing roofs and fields. The stitch has a definite diagonal feeling to it, a look that might be useful for stitching skies or clothing.

It is important to maintain a consistent tension when stitching the Moorish stitch and I would also encourage you not to pull too strongly as the stitch can pull the canvas out of square. Compensating the Moorish stitch can be tricky. Keep in mind that the long stitches of one row of Diagonal Scotch will match up with the short stitches of the next row of Diagonal Scotch.

Variations on the Moorish stitch include Wide Moorish (middle right and left) in which a Gobelin stitch (2 x 2) is employed between the rows of Diagonal Scotch instead of the Continental stitch. Another option is Giant Moorish (bottom right and left) in which the Diagonal Scotch stitch is expanded to include an "over four" stitch so that the pattern for the row of Diagonal Scotch stitches then becomes over 1-2-3-4-3-2, repeat.

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